Responses to “Will You Please Be Quiet, Please”


Editorial Director Ruthanne Terrero

We’ve gotten a number of comments on a recent column that our Editorial Director, Ruthanne Terrero, ran about people openly chatting with one another in the audience while a speaker is on stage doing a presentation.

How do you feel about this issue? Sound off on our Facebook page….

Good Morning, Ruthanne;
I couldn't resist!  I had to write to tell you kudos for the terrific article "Will You Please Be Quiet!"
I read your article in each issue of Travel Agent magazine and always appreciate your thoughts but this article was long overdue.
 It never ceases to amaze me that leaders can be the chiefest offenders when it comes to rudeness and yet would never tolerate it from those they lead.
My daughter is a teacher and when they have a conference, she says that teachers will sit and talk through the entire presentation of which they would never tolerate this from their students.
In church, I have had people come and sit next to me and talk during the worship time, as if it's not a part of the service.  So if you don't want to sing, come late for the sermon only, don't interrupt my worship time. And the list of rudeness goes on, inlcuding the travel conferences.
So thank you for addressing the issue and continue the good work.
Tami Riebel, owner
Bluewater Destinations, Inc.

Dear Ruthanne:

Truer words were never spoken, and how annoying it is.
I've done the following and both worked well:
1. At WITS (then Women in Travel) Meetings when I was President, brought one of those small Chinese Gongs with me to the podium. When I was being "noised out"  brought it up, banged on it - dead silence and then I continued. Only took once and then the audience knew I meant respect to speakers (myself or others in the industry).
2. Have brought meetings to a total halt by simply speaking into the microphone with a simple statement "I'm sorry was there something you wished added to my speech? We all would welcome your input as it is obviously very important to you."
Keep up the good work - so enjoy reading my issue cover to cover.

Gwynne Balson
All Destinations, Inc.

Dear Ruthanne,

Just read your “Will You Please Be Quiet!” in the October 3rd issue of Travel Agent and I agree with you 100%!  We’ve all been there, subjected to unwanted conversations or one-way comments into a cell phone, by someone who is clueless.  When it happens again, I agree to ask these people to stop chatting and distracting those of us who are there and those who are the speakers.

Rhea Woofter, Travel Consultant
Montecito Village Travel
Santa Barbara, CA

Dear Ruthanne:

Thank you and amen for the "Will You Please be Quiet!" editorial appearing in the October 3, 2011, issue of Travel Agent.
Talking, whispering, hacking coughs and ringing cell phones all contribute to the lack of professionalism shown by many a travel agent (and sometimes sales representatives) now-a-days.
Please add in tacky dress codes and appalling table manners often exhibited by attendees.
I just attended a lovely luncheon sponsored by a luxury cruise line. Tee shirts, jeans, elbows on the table and shoveling the food in - I just sat there and shook my head in disbelief.
If the agents themselves don't know better, where are the agency owners and managers who allow their employees to walk out of the office to attend work-related events where they are representing the agency in such a slovenly manner?  
Business schools at a lot of universities offer etiquette classes how to conduct oneself at a cocktail party or business lunch or dinner.
The travel industry should take note.  And every time I hear an agent ask a sales rep about discounts or "freebies," I cringe.
When a travel agent complains that the public doesn't treat her/him like a professional, well, then stop and take a good look at yourself. Look in the mirror and think about the image which you project and how you act.
There are no excuses.
Thank you and please, keep up the good work!

Pamela Kvidera, CTC
Cruise & Tour Planners and  Travel House
Kirkland, WA